tv Charlie Rose Bloomberg February 12, 2015 10:00pm-11:01pm EST
this show does not deserve a restless host and neither do you. it has been an absolute privilege. the honor of my professional life. i thank you for watching. for hate watching it. whatever reason you were tuning in for, you get in this business with the idea that maybe you have a point of view and something to express. to receive feedback from that is the greatest feeling you can ask for. >> his departure comes after more than 16 years at the desk. the new york times describes him as the nation's satirist in chief. he was compared to walter conkrite. it was a mainstay of late night television. it was
also a breeding ground for comedic talent launching the careers of john oliver and stephen colbert, among others. bill carter has covered the television industry for more than 25 years. chris smith of new york magazine wrote the piece on stewart. james poniewozik is the television critic at time magazine. i am pleased to have them at this table. were you surprised by this or did you have an idea? >> that was the story that came out in november. i was not surprised. we spent a lot of time talking about the movie he had just made. we talked about the legacy of the "the daily show" and the fact that his contract is up in september. he had not 100% made up his mind at that point. it was pretty clear the direction he was leaning. the man does not feel sorry for himself in any way.
he has been extraordinarily lucky and well paid for his job. 16 plus years, four nights a week. that is pocket change for you, a day at the beach. but it is a grind. he has done it very well. making the movie enlarged his world as a citizen and artist. he was encouraged he should try new and different things. he wants to turn the show over at a time where whoever follows him will have the entire 2016 presidential campaign as a base narrative. it makes sense. >> were you writing this? that stewart was thinking about this.
>> usually at late night, they join late-night and that is the end of their career. they do not do another thing. they tend to have to be dragged off the air. it is not something you give up lightly. getting laughs on the air, there is a drug affect to it. for jon, getting laughs every night, there is nothing better. >> bill wrote one of the definitive books about the transitions in late night. jon had a cameo appearance in the leno-letterman drama. there was a piece about how television as a landscape, and late in particular, has changed from 1989 until now.
if you left a job, it would be to take the late show. that is not nearly what it was. >> that is what stephen colbert did. >> it is not nearly the same thing. >> he was in the second position. jon stewart never had to leave. he was the host of the oscars twice. >> would jon stewart have taken the letterman job if he was positioned to do that? >> i would say no. >> he told me literally, no. >> maybe he felt it was time to move on. his career has been this parade of opportunities that he might have had that other people might have regarded as a step up. he did not necessarily see as a step up from the daily show. there is a natural assumed hierarchy of cable to network. they talked about him moving into broadcast networks late night.
meet the press. if you are doing something you love. gives you a chance to have -- his point of view. it will take a while for anything to seem better. >> johnny carson did television --never did tv after leaving "the tonight show." >> his voice changed a little bit because he was not delivering jokes every night. letterman said he sounded different. because he wasn't performing. >> he did see him once come to new york. he did a few things, a tribute privately. he said it was as sharp as ever. why now? because the contract was up? >> that was part of it, sure. the timing was fairly graceful in that he wanted stephen colbert have the spotlight.
he doesn't want to be stepping on colbert's entrance to the late show in september. he wanted to be in comedy central now to help larry wilmore get off the ground. provide a lead in as wilmore's show gets going. it comes down to a human decision. >> spend more time with his family. >> a very doting father. i interviewed him when he was doing the oscars. i was in his dressing room. it was l.a. he said, hold on a second. he had to call his kids and tell them a story before they went to sleep. that is a father who is involved. >> his friend dennis leary once described jon to me as a high
functioning recluse. he did occasional charity events. this show has been his thing. >> i think he used the word relentless. >> restless. you cannot be a restless host. >> this show does not deserve a slightly restless host and neither do you. i don't think i'm going to miss coming on television everyday. i will miss coming here. i love the people. they are creative and collaborative and kind. you understand what i am saying. i love them and respect them so much. >> we love you, jon. [applause]
>> i think for what is over the hill, he doesn't know exactly what is over the hill. he enjoyed doing the film immensely, more than he expected. although it was painful at times. he is a guy with a fertile mind. >> the subject matter of what he has been doing. commenting on this maelstrom of politics and the 24 hour media. spitting out the video clips they do and the analysis of those. it has got to be like drinking out of a fire hose for 16 years. >> he was unique. there was a combination of talent and skills from writers
to performers. to researchers to technology. >> they found any clip anybody ever made. >> technology has gotten better and that has helped him as time has gone on. >> jon really, especially in the past 5-8 years, has driven home that each bit they do. they want the laugh. >> he is a comic at heart. >> each bit has to have a point of view. it does not have to be the same. he is more liberal than not. but each bit has to hit the point of view. that has elevated the show. i have a son who is a freshman in college. he grew up watching jon and consuming news that way. he does not read a word i write.
>> you are going to get a point of view, which some people would say you should be more objective about. he has a point of view for everything he does. >> the point of view for jon stewart -- >> he skewers them nightly. but for a young audience, they are engaged. most of the time they are not. he presented them with information as well as a point of view. >> let's say you are here and you did not know either stephen or jon were going to move on. who had the most impact? >> stewart has had the most impact across the breadth of television. part of it is because stephen colbert is kind of part of jon stewart. it would be hard to cite a
particular person who has as broad an influence on comedy. how we discuss things in television. i do think colbert is possibly the singular comic performance of our generation. he may be the greater individual talent, which is why i cannot wait to see what he does on late show. overall influence, television is different because this person came along, i would give that to stewart. >> stephen colbert would not hesitate. he owes everything to jon. that character was the correspondent before he was the anchor. >> i happened to be there and was standing on stage.
i happened to be positioned so that when jon came out, the pure love, it was chilling. they understood what they had done and that this was in one case a passing. >> stewart can always be the ed mcmahon on the colbert show. >> jon would always resist being called a journalist. >> why did he consider doing "meet the press?" >> he was willing to let them throw a discussion at him. he would argue strenuously, i am not a journalist. i was on stage with him. i said, you are like a political cartoonist. they are funny. they are journalists. what you are doing is satire like one of them.
i guess that is a good analogy but i am a comic. i am a standup comic. >> anybody who has made it in that world is fiercely that. >> the talented people brought a journalistic rigor to what they did, whether it was fact checking or the tightness. >> i would add that their curiosity and engagement had to do with public issues. >> what jon has said repeatedly, it is corny and earnest, he has criticized the media relentlessly. whether was the movie "rosewater" or implicit in the show, a lot of what he did in his criticism of the was trying to say, be better. do it better. >> you do not criticize
something you do not care about. >> it is because he admires the work at its best. >> what was his core skill as a comic? for example, with letterman, it was an ad lib to a conversation. >> i think it is his intelligence. he brought a fierce intelligence to what he was covering. he did not skimp on finding exactly the facts and being demanding. >> i would say, finding the core absurdities or hypocrisy. it could be turned into a laugh but made the issue worth
satirizing. >> as a performer, i would say tone. there were elements of his delivery, the ability to -- nobody could roll their eyes or wince as expressively as jon stewart. this is sounding like an obituary. [laughter] >> this is a guy who is going to have another act in his career. 52. the other late-night host is just getting started. colbert is 51. >> do you think he will create another television show at some point? >> if i had to bet, i would say no. i think he was really intrigued by the time he spent in jordan and egypt. who had been a doctor and had become a political satirist.
is working in a country where that kind of thing is not encouraged. having a real impact on the process. jon was intrigued about that part of the world. >> i think he was considerably better at the end of this term than at the beginning. and he was considerably different. >> the obama term or his own? >> i just think he got better and better. a, because of the talent they had there. they had good people that helped him make the show. he just got better in terms of expressions. the way he became a natural. the physicality. his interviews. he literally probably studied that to make him better.
she joined the magazine 20 years ago. she replaces john micklethwait who is moving to bloomberg news as its editor in chief. i am pleased to welcome those hands back to this table. here is what he said, too. this newspaper deprives its editors of the egocentric adornments of our trade. these pages include no weekly editor's letters to readers under a beaming, airbrushed picture. you spend your time as an editor in deplorable obscurity, consoled by the fact that you have the nicest job in
journalism. >> that is so true. it is a wonderful newspaper. we call it a newspaper. wonderful newspaper. it is an amazing group of journalists. that is what makes it wonderful. i am sure you know a lot of them. we do what i think is some of the best journalism in the world. we stand for causes i believe in. liberalism, classical english liberalism. >> what does that mean? start with the founder. >> 19th-century liberalism, to put it simply, is individual freedom and free markets. we fought against protectionism in the u.k. that is why james wilson set it up in 1843.
he wanted a contest between intelligence and the timid ignorance. that is what we try to do. in my own mind, i think we are a newspaper for the globally curious. for people who care about the world and are curious about what lies ahead. at a time like this, massive technological change and globalization. it is an exciting time to do what we are doing. there are people who are natural economist readers around the world. as john wrote in his editorial it is the one time they get their picture in the newspaper. he was paranoidly optimistic. he thought classical liberalism was under threat. you look at russia, turkey. china.
russia, in the 1990's or even 2000's, we might have thought it was going to direction it is hard to think it is going now. people have questioned their faith in free markets. it has made people think there is a different, more state oriented approach. classical liberalism has been under attack. what i think our response really is is to interpret liberal principles for the 21st century. >> has it been under attack because of its performance? >> in part because of its performance. there were big things wrong with the financial system on the eve of the financial crisis. >> 2008. >> too big to fail banks. basically free markets, free trade, is a force for prosperity. look at the rise of emerging wealth.
i think we need to think about what the big challenges of our time are. inequality, which is a function of rapid technological change and partly globalization. we are seeing big income distributions. liberals -- i keep having to say liberals in the english sense -- have to address that. >> it is now on everybody's agenda. david axelrod was here and said, that is what secretary clinton is trying to work out in terms of the campaign. that is what mitt romney has been talking about. everybody in the political and larger global arena is talking about, what do we do? >> that is a big step forward. there are times we have discussed this, a subject i care
about. true progressivism was the cover story we did in 2012. we tried to lay out what a radical centrist agenda was. to get it to the stage where people are discussing this as a topic that needs to be addressed is a huge step forward. we were not there two years ago. the domestic agenda will be, what is the right way to respond. the problem is you have both sides, democrats and republicans, talking past each other. the best kind of agenda for me borrows from both. too many on the left think the answer is higher taxes on the rich. too many on the right say, it's a problem but as long as you
have equality of opportunity and improve education, everything will be fine. there is a middle ground that says, what is the right role of government? we have to think how we fund the government. a lot of what government has in doing is spend more on old people because of entitlements. in this country particularly through the tax exemptions, too much implicitly on affluent people. the shift has to be away from the old and rich to the young and poor. simplify the tax or get rid of exemptions. the fundamental drivers for the economy, especially the rapid pace of technological change mean rewards will go to the top.
that is a big trend. >> some people will argue how to create more economic growth. >> that is part of it. but it is not an either or. some research says you get stronger, more lasting growth in societies that are more equal. if you have too much redistribution, you hurt growth. we thought redistribution was bad for growth. it is true if you do too much. but with societies that are -- that have less income inequality, research shows they grow more. i think we have to have a policy agenda that goes beyond that. sometimes i think the right prism to think about this is to go back 100 years when we had this pace of technological change. the industrial revolution of the
late 19th century. we had huge changes and public policy. the role of the state changed. you had teddy roosevelt. the creation of universal secondary education. we need to thinks in those terms. is it sensible that the state involvement in education ends at the end of secondary school? do we need lifetime education? how do we harness technology better? do we need to change the basic tenets of the wealth? --the welfare state? -- of the
welfare state? >> is the investment in infrastructure a given? >> it basically is a good idea. you can find individual examples. right now, for much of the world where you have low interest rates, and the need for more if it seems a no-brainer. historians will look back and say, what are these people thinking. >> people look at the global economy and say, the u.s. economy is performing best. >> they could be right. >> you look at gdp growth in china is bigger, but they are declining and have issues. they do say that? >> they do. >> at the same time, you have huge inequalities between the haves and have-nots. the 1% and the 99%. i'm interested in other countries where you might find remarkable economic growth because of classic liberalism. a devotion to freedom.
where is the shining example of where that is on the march? >> india. in terms of where the potential is to see that, you can really see it. you are likely to see it in india. that is a country with persistent underperforming in the aftermath of liberalism. now you have a government determined to be more liberal. china is more complicated. most recently, the growth spurt has been a kind of debt fueled investment binge. as they shift to consumption the economy is slowing.
>> they went from export to domestic consumption difficult? >> the economy is naturally flowing. it has become a richer country and is slowing. the demographics are not that good. there are aging fast because of the one child policy. they have structural reasons to grow more slowly. the transition as they are trying to defuse the bubble in housing sector and shifted the economy away from debt fueled growth. it is -- from debt fueled growth. it is slowing. the u.s., sense 2009, has underperformed. we expected the economy to grow and it did not. this year, it really has exhilarated. there has been a paradigm shift.
even as the rest of the advanced world not looking so great. europe is out of recession but a mess. japan shot itself in the foot with a consumption tax hike. it took a hit. china is slowing. brazil is slowing. the u.s. stands out. >> u.s. model stands out? >> there are two aspects. the u.s., in comparison with europe, the model is the u.s. reacted in a better way to the aftermath of the financial crisis. they did fiscal stimulus. they recapitalized banks. the europeans had a load of austerity and dithered a lot. they are going slowly in part for self-inflicted reasons. the u.s. has put the crisis behind it. that said, there are challenges. inequality. demography. the baby boomers are aging.
>> our demographic picture is better than many places. >> but not as great as it was a few decades ago. rapid growth is a lower number than it would have been. >> what was driving the economies of the emerging markets? what is happening to them now? >> there are two levels of looking at it. one is the underlying momentum that comes from catching up. if you are a poor country, you ought to be growing faster. the other is the commodity boom. brazil. high commodity prices. in brazil's case, there was also a domestic credit boom. interest rates were low. they had a huge domestic credit boom.
poorer countries have freed up markets. they are catching up and that leads to faster growth. lay on top of that a boom from extra credit and commodity prices. >> layover that the oil prices and fracking in the u.s. >> we had a conversation, if anybody had said it will prices were half of what they were, i would have laughed. it is a big shift of wealth to consumers from producers. if you are an oil consuming country, you are better off. producers are worse. the world economy overall is better. but there are pockets hit. >> iran, russia. >> venezuela, nigeria.
the u.s. is a big producer but also a big consumer economy. there's a macro effect where it is like a tax cut. but the shale industry has been hit. this has happened because of supply. the supply has been shale. one question is, can the prices last? the investment horizon -- a lot of u.s. shale is not profitable at these prices. once you have built the rigs which you can do quickly, you pump what shale you can get. we are already seeing a lot of investment plans being brought forward. >> do you think that is what the saudis intended to do? >> there are many conspiracy
theories about what they intended. there are parallels with the previous time they let oil prices go down and stay down. the shale investment cycle is much shorter than the traditional exploring for a well. at these prices, u.s. shale production will be curtailed. as the price goes up, it is not hard to produce again. i think the economics of the oil market has shifted for one where opec is a cartel that dominated prices, to one that is more market determined. we had a cover a few weeks ago about shale. >> i look forward to the cover as much as what is inside. >> the market has shifted towards shale. >> what happens to russia, iran?
>> russia has been hit hard. oil is their biggest export. they are hit by sanctions. those people who suggested this is going to affect and change putin's behavior have been disappointed. it is arguably reinforcing him and his behavior. >> it reinforces his paranoia. >> that is an underappreciated risk. >> what putin is trying to do and the breadth of his paranoia and desire, desire to -- >> what he might do to maintain his popularity. >> that is one to worry about. venezuela is heading for default soon.
nigeria is in big trouble. it is a big oil producer, hit hard. iran is hit hard. they need a high oil price for their budget and do not have it. >> sanctions are not helping. >> there are losers and they are disproportionately tricky regimes. >> the classic example where sanctions worked was south africa. >> there is an evolution about how sanctions work. in russia's case, it is almost as if they have become a tool of first resort. sanctions are the main way the west has responded. i am struck by how the europeans have signed on.
because of the u.s. dominance in the system, the potential to do a lot with sanctions is higher than people thought when we had them against south africa. if we think about the interconnectedness of the system, the dominance of the dollar, there is an important potential tool. >> what is the risk to the global economy? >> too reliant on the u.s. is the immediate risk. i worry about a replay or an echo of the late 1990's. the u.s. economy growing strongly. >> the bubble of 2001.
>> larry summers said, flying on one engine. that is dangerous. >> the question is whether they can lead the economy. >> the longer-term risk is political economy. it comes back to the paranoid optimism you have to be if you believe in open markets. if you have stagnant living standards for the majority of people, it is very easy for people to find scapegoats. foreigners, you see that in europe. it would be very hard to maintain support for the kinds of policies you believe in in a world where the majority of people see their living standard stagnate. that is the real risk. >> it is the political disruption. >> the disruption is coming from technology. we are in the midst -- >> technology accelerates and adds to its velocity.
>> technology is changing. we are in the midst of a technological revolution which is changing the nature of work. disrupting every industry. >> productivity. >> the balance between capital and labor. a lot of the structures we built in the 20th century were built for an economy that does not exist. every time i go to silicon valley or talk to people in the tech sector, i am convinced we are nearer the beginning than the end. on one hand, incredible things are going to happen. on the other hand, for the majority of workers, and skilled workers who worked in 20th century jobs, that is a big challenge. >> is the focus of "the economist" the economy, or the collision of politics and economics?
>> it is the latter. in the mid-19 century, people talked about political economy. that is part of what we do. there are things we do that have nothing to do with politics and economics. science and technology. >> even a bit of culture. >> is one of the great misconceptions is we are for business people. we are really not. i like to use the phrase that we offer the globally curious. another phrase i have been using -- >> i do like that. it is what i want this program to be. the globally curious. >> the other phrase, we should stretch the reader's mind. i think we should fight for and champion things. we should champion at our liberal values.
>> you want it to be an advocacy magazine. i think we should fight for causes. >> how do you balance that? >> we have always put that together. been a views paper rather than a newspaper. we believe in our liberal worldview. it should always be based on impeccable analysis. we shouldn't basically be doing slogans or having opinion without fact. we should have fact-based analysis and from that have views. >> there is a saying that you can have own your opinion but not your own facts.
>> i think we should be helping to lay out what we think will happen. predictive. bold. we should say, we have the courage of our convictions. in november, we put on the cover russia's weakening economy. we said it was in worse shape than people thought. we should do more of that. >> how will it change under your leadership? >> wow. let me give you some concrete changes that have happened already. >> that is very good. >> internally, we have a tradition of having editorial meetings on monday mornings in
the editor's office. >> the problem was the office is too small, so i have moved it. now in a bigger room. >> still on monday. >> still on monday. we debate, i will change the format of it, we discussed the big things we are working on and then debate the leaders. anyone who wants to write an editorial pitches. it is like common room in the university. we have a real debate about it. >> how did you get this job? let me tell you what i have read. there was a list of 15 people they thought could. do this. and then they narrowed it. people have the confidence that they can lead a great institution. >> you had to apply.
you had to write an e-mail saying you want to be considered. there were 12 people who did that. then you had to supply a cv and any other supporting materials. what you wanted to do. then there was a first round of interviews and a short list. i had interviews with the board. >> they could not have done better. >> thank you. ♪
>> from pier three in san francisco, welcome to "bloomberg west." the biggest gainers in tech, trip advisor and cisco. a cease-fire in eastern ukraine helped to settle some of the broader attention in the markets. cbs reports a drop in fourth-quarter sales and profit. the company said rising affiliate fees and advertising sales were something that other companies haven't been able to pull off. cbs and nfl have renewed